On Sunday, Marcus Smart was slapped with a three-game suspension by the Big 12 for his shove of Texas Tech fan Jeff Orr during the Cowboys’ loss in Lubbock on Saturday. The punishment was met with varied responses from the national media.
But first, from the home base: Berry Tramel says that Smart has changed this season, and not in a good way. … OSU writer John Helsley was on the scene in Lubbock on Saturday. He says Smart’s next step is repairing his reputation. … OSU writer Gina Mizell pulled together quotes from former Cowboys players John Lucas III and Desmond Mason. Both players said Smart essentially “should have kept his cool.”
And from around the nation …
From New York Daily News writer Mike Lupica: Orr was just as wrong as Smart. A snippet:
In a thousand years, Jeff Orr, loud Texas Tech basketball fan, wouldn’t go up to Marcus Smart on the street or in a bar and say what he said to him, not only say what he said but think he could get away with that. Somehow, though, he thought his ticket provided some kind of force field. Or immunity. This time it didn’t.
SB Nation’s Mike Rutherford said the Smart situation “is destined to become largely about race because of what was allegedly said,” but hopes that the issue of fan behavior and player safety isn’t overshadowed.
ESPN.com’s Dana O’Neil said Travis Ford let Smart down, contrasting Ford’s lack of action to some other coaches’ decisions in college basketball. O’Neil, Andy Katz and Myron Medcalf also did a roundtable discussion of Smart and OSU hoops.
An excerpt from O’Neil’s column:
Ford insisted that he knows “Marcus Smart and knows his heart,” and this is not that person. The problem is, this is the Marcus Smart everyone else not only has come to know but also has seen. This was a horrific single act, but one borne out of behavior that had been brewing and festering for weeks.
Tim Cowlishaw of the Dallas Morning News said lessons can be learned from “the Shove Heard ‘Round the World”
The Smart Support
— Jeffrey Carroll (@JeffCarroll30) February 10, 2014
From University of Florida coach Billy Donovan
Billy D on Marcus Smart: He crossed the line, but he's a really, really great kid. I never saw anything like (Tech) incident w/him.
— Chris Harry (@GatorZoneChris) February 10, 2014
In the Big 12
Fred Hoiberg on Smart: "I can pretty much assure you every coach in the country went in and talked to their team about it the next day."
— David Ubben (@davidubben) February 10, 2014